Following hot on the heels of the two big guns of the heavy metal festival season (Download and Sonisphere), the increasingly impressive Bloodstock, held in the lovely grounds of Catton Hall in Derbyshire, England looks set to have a glorious weekend, if its stellar line up of legends and contemporary metal is anything to go by.
Bloodstock has grown a fearsome reputation as the most metal of the metal festivals and this year’s line-up is no exception, covering all the bases you expect and some bases that you didn’t think needed covering but have been all the same. Anyway, everyone at Ghost Cult is getting hugely excited for what should be a very memorable few days.
Friday is packed to the gunnels with some choice options so it will definitely be a case of running between stages if you want to try and fit it all in: Krokodil, Rotting Christ and Winterfylleth are names worth marking on your clashfinder spreadsheet. There’s likely to be a lot of love and a lot of circle pits for Hatebreed; there won’t be many faces not adorning corpse paint for Dimmu Borgir but if you wanted to lay a bet, then the suffocating heaviness of Triptykon or the dirty, southern charms of Down are likely to slug it out for band of the day.
Saturday is likely to be none more black. There has been a near year-long salivating at the prospect of the return of black metal legends Emperor, who headline the Saturday night main stage with Ihsahn and co promising a blackened gallop through their classic opus In the Nightside Eclipse as well as plenty of other surprises. Unmissable, really. It’s not all about them though: Carcass are currently in rude health, Shining are likely to shake the hangover from you with ease but the prospect of seeing Crowbar pummel riff after glorious riff is likely to be worth the entrance fee alone. Elsewhere we will be checking out The King is Blind, The Mercy House and, hell yeah, HellYeah.
Thrash metal legends Megadeth get to close the festival on the Sunday but there is more than ample support from everyone’s favourite Vikings Amon Amarth, festival stalwarts Saxon and Graveyard are always worth 30 mins of your time. If you need more inspiration then you could do worse than checking out Northern Ireland’s Stormzone or the industrial influenced Avatar. Honestly, there’s piles more: it’s gonna to be a classic. See you in the circle pit or, given my advancing years, the seats near the bar.
WORDS BY MAT DAVIES